Reading: Psalms 104-105
Click on the link for the reading to read the Psalms for this week. As we read, let us not do so in haste. Take time to read each Psalm at least three times: once to understand the content, once as a poem or song to feel the meaning, and once as a prayer to appropriate the Psalm into your life. There will often be a hymn attached at the bottom of the page that helps bring meaning to one of the Psalms for the week.
PSALM 104: The Lord God Made Them All
Psalm 104 praises the Lord as the one who created the world and provides for all creatures that live in it. It is a poetic vision of the world and nature as the work of the Lord. Contemporary people have a variety of ways of viewing and speaking about the world and the forms of life it sustains—scientific, economic, aesthetic, recreational. This psalm offers the view and language that is appropriate for faith. It exquisitely depicts how all God’s works effectively bless God simply by taking their rightful place in an intricate ecosystem that originated with and constantly depends on the sovereign Maker.
PSALM 105: The Power of the Promise
According to this psalm, there is a single explanation for Israel’s foundational story. The whole story from the wandering of Abraham to the settlement of Israel in the land of Canaan is based on the Lord’s promise of the land to Abraham. The psalm praises the Lord, whose power was manifest in the wonderful works and acts of judgment of which Israel’s story is composed. A long version of that foundational story makes up verses 12-44 of Psalm 105. The Lord is exclusively the actor here; his power at work to save and preserve Israel is on full display. The psalmist’s purpose in retelling the old story is to evoke a grateful and faithful response by the people to God’s choice to be related to them, a choice supported by His “wonderful works” (vv. 2-5). Therefore, the psalm is not primarily about the past. Rather, it is about the present and the future. Isaac Watts, in his hymn “Bless O My Soul! The Living God” asks the question, “Why should the wonders He hath wrought be lost in silence and forgot?” In answer to his question, Psalm 105 resoundingly proclaims, “They shouldn’t!” Rather, the people of God are called upon to “make known . . . tell . . . remember” (vv. 1-2,6).
This is the Psalm in hymn form. Read or sing it through with melody to give the Psalm another dimension.
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